The different types of stereotypes oppress some particular group of people or an individual, through making remarks that will make them feel degraded in the society. Some of the types of stereotypes include sexual remarks, racial remarks as well as the gender remarks. Most of the literature works such as poems, articles, novels, and songs demonstrates various instances of stereotypes that impact a particular group of people. The following essay seeks to discuss the poems "Black Boys Play the Classics by Derricotte, Toi and Heritage by Hogan, Linda in relation to the stereotypes applied by the poets.
Hogan, Linda. Heritage
The poem Heritage by Linda Hogan, reflects on the memories of a child living in an interracial family. The type of stereotype that is demonstrated in this poem is the cultural stereotype. The poem is about our lost heritage and forgotten past. Through the poem Heritage, the speaker applies three verses where the speaker of the current generation that has lost their past heritage and culture, From my father I take his brown eyes, the plague of locusts that leveled our crops, they flew in formation like buzzards (Hogan 95). Linda seems to interconnect a lot about her fathers side of the family, who are all the descendants of the Native Americans. Linda shows that, in our today's life, we have lost our past touch of life, instead, we have children who are blindfolded from the significance and importance of our past culture, and heritage due to the fact that it is was neither taught nor provided to the new generation. There is the stereotype that the children of the modern days are disadvantaged with the acquaintance of the intricate and colorful past, this is seen when the narrator stated, From my family I have learned the secrets of never having a home (Hogan 95). The cultural stereotype has its consequences since one's identity and originality gets eroded gradually from one generation to the other, the possible solution for such stereotype is by accepting personal development and learning from the past culture and heritage.
The poem contains some optimism where it enhances on accepting life, enhancing personal development, and learning through experience. The poem emphasizes on focusing on the essential matters in life rather than getting involved in the petty, frolicsome matters.
Derricotte, Toi. Black Boys Play the Classics
In the poem, Toi described the new America, although she stereotyped about the America community where there is discrimination against the black people. The poem has stood for decades due to the picture it portrays on the contentious racism and segregation issue. The poem shows racism/segregation type of stereotype; there are characters that represent the different races in the poem. There are three kids that are beautifully playing violin, then the white adults who are passing by and tossing to them some coins. At the same time the brown people watch in admiration, and the white children are entranced. All is definitely clear in the final line where Toi strongly states that "A: Beneath the surface, we are one" (Derricotte 83). This phrase mean s that, regardless of our skin colors we need to treat one another equally and we are all in a position of the same great feats.
The consequence of such type of stereotype is that the society will be ruined through depression, enmity, cultural and racial conflicts that are caused with racism. Racism as a type of segregation demonstrated through the poem Black Boys Play the Classics can be resolved by having a poem that will promote unity among races and ensure that no particular race is being prejudiced through literary works or in the society as general.
The poem lacks optimism, instead of throughout the poem there is a despair for the individuals in the society who originates from the oppressed race are being dehumanized. The dignity of the black people being compromised and their respect lowered. The white men passed the kids without stopping to mean that they were neither interested with their music and viewed the kids as poor and beggars, and the poem ends without showing the optimistic perception about the kids. is the three black kids in ratty sneakers & T-shirts playing two violins and a celloBrahms. White men in business suits have already dug into their pockets as they pass and they toss in a dollar or two without stopping (Derricotte 83).
Indeed stereotype has become an epidemic in our society and those who degraded become weak and not able to comfortably engage with others. In that case, the two poems Black Boys Play the Classics by Derricotte, Toi and Heritage by Hogan, Linda is meant to create awareness of the major stereotypes as well as the targeted groups for that matter. Poems are used to reveal how stereotype has contaminated community and adversely affecting how we relate with one another, by creating awareness people can engage in discussing how to mitigate the issue.
Derricotte, Toi. "Black Boys Play the Classics." Prairie Schooner 68.3 (1994): 83-83.
Hogan, Linda. "Heritage." Writing the Southwest (1984): 94-95.
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